\ˈtrip \
tripped; tripping

Definition of trip 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to catch the foot against something so as to stumble

2 : to make a mistake or false step (as in morality or accuracy)

3a : to dance, skip, or caper with light quick steps

b : to walk with light quick steps

4 : to stumble in articulation when speaking

5 : to make a journey

6a : to actuate a mechanism

b : to become operative

7a : to get high on a psychedelic drug (such as LSD) : turn on often used with out

b slang : freak sense 3b

transitive verb

1a : to cause to stumble often used with up

b : to cause to fail : obstruct often used with up

2 : to detect in a misstep, fault, or blunder also : expose usually used with up

3 : to release or operate (a mechanism) especially by releasing a catch or detent trip the fire alarm

4 : to raise (an anchor) from the bottom so as to hang free

5a : to pull (a yard) into a perpendicular position for lowering

b : to hoist (a topmast) far enough to enable the fid to be withdrawn preparatory to housing or lowering

6 archaic : to perform (a dance) lightly or nimbly

trip the light fantastic

: dance



Definition of trip (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : voyage, journey

b : a single round or tour on a business errand

2a : an intense visionary experience undergone by a person who has taken a psychedelic drug (such as LSD)

b : an exciting or unusual experience the party was a trip

3 : absorption in or obsession with an interest, attitude, or state of mind a guilt trip on a nostalgia trip

4 : a faltering step caused by stumbling

5 : a stroke or catch by which a wrestler is made to lose footing

6 : error, misstep

7 : a quick light step

8a : the action of tripping mechanically

b : a device for tripping a mechanism (such as a catch or detent)

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Examples of trip in a Sentence


He deliberately tried to trip me. The dancers tripped off the stage.


They got back from their trip yesterday. a trip around the world He was on an acid trip. an ankle injury caused by a trip
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Braun was tripped occasionally, though, by his opposition to Obamacare. Dylan Scott, Vox, "Mike Braun elected to US Senate: Republican wins Indiana race over centrist Democrat," 7 Nov. 2018 Back in November Carrie Underwood tripped on her front steps. Leah Prinzivalli, Glamour, "Carrie Underwood Addressed the Rumors That Her Injury Was a Cover for Plastic Surgery," 2 Aug. 2018 Shortcuts around the federal rule-making process also tripped up the administration’s efforts to allow employers to withhold contraception coverage. Robert Pear, New York Times, "A Fatal Flaw as Trump Tries to Remake Health Care: Shortcuts," 7 July 2018 As a result, the tie-up may not trip regulators’ alarms about a potential monopoly, some analysts have said. Stephen Singer,, "American Medical Association Urges Regulators To Block CVS-Aetna Deal," 21 June 2018 But our preliminary findings imply that an attack on South Korea with U.S. forces present may not trip the wire of public opinion as dramatically as often claimed. Steven Ward, Washington Post, "How do we know if U.S. troops in South Korea are a viable tripwire? A new survey suggests it’s not that simple.," 8 June 2018 During stoppage time, Ifeoma Onumonu was tripped in the box by Washington's Caprice Dydasco and awarded a penalty kick. Tim Brown,, "Tobin Heath returns as Portland Thorns settle for 1-1 draw with Washington Spirit," 20 Apr. 2018 The only snag, Hill said, was tripping at the start of his first 40-yard dash. Stefan Stevenson, star-telegram, "John Diarse saw up close the improvement Kenny Hill has made | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 30 Mar. 2018 In 2018 Wisconsin will face two of those cross-division contenders, Michigan and Penn State, but that shouldn’t trip up its postseason aspirations. Joan Niesen,, "Start Up the Offseason Hype Train for ... Wisconsin?," 28 Feb. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Her trips included visits to Iceland, Switzerland and Mexico, all documented on social media. Tamara Lush, The Seattle Times, "Costa Ricans arrest resort guard in death of Florida woman," 5 Dec. 2018 After a preshow snack of lemon pepper wings, Starbursts, and pepperoni pizza, Taylor was ready to head out the door and take on the world, but not before encouraging Versace to make their New York trip an annual affair. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Teyana Taylor’s Getting-Ready Ritual for Versace Included Starbursts, Dancing, and an Epic Outfit," 4 Dec. 2018 Retirees in large planned communities tend to take a lot of their trips inside the communities. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Waymo’s ambitious plans for high-speed taxis could be holding it back," 3 Dec. 2018 On his trip to North Korea in September, Mr. Moon brought along the heads of the four biggest conglomerates to help promote inter-Korean economic engagement. Eun-young Jeong, WSJ, "Business Scandals Rocked South Korea, but Promised Overhaul Underwhelms," 30 Nov. 2018 On his trip to New Zealand, Prince Harry met a boy who had lost his mother. Megan Friedman, Harper's BAZAAR, "Prince Harry Said the Perfect Thing to Comfort a Child Who Had Lost His Mother," 30 Oct. 2018 The Northern Lights are more than just something pretty to look at on your next Canadian camping trip. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "A Group of Scientists Want to Launch a Satellite to Make an Artificial Aurora," 29 Oct. 2018 See the full look below: And shop the shoes here: Harry and Meghan will start their trip to New Zealand with a traditional welcome ceremony on the lawn of government house. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Just Arrived in New Zealand Wearing a Plaid Trench and a Poppy Pin," 27 Oct. 2018 But fear not, your Pie update is just a quick trip to the System settings away. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "You can try out a fresh slice of Android 9 Pie with more than 50% off the Essential Phone," 20 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trip.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of trip


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 3a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 5

History and Etymology for trip


Middle English trippen, from Anglo-French treper, triper, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English treppan to tread — more at trap

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Statistics for trip

Last Updated

24 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trip

The first known use of trip was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for trip



English Language Learners Definition of trip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hit your foot against something while you are walking or running so that you fall or almost fall

: to cause (someone who is walking or running) to fall or almost fall

: to dance or walk with light, quick steps



English Language Learners Definition of trip (Entry 2 of 2)

: a journey to a place

: a short journey to a store, business, office, etc., for a particular purpose

: the experience of strange mental effects (such as seeing things that are not real) that is produced by taking a very powerful drug (such as LSD)


\ˈtrip \
tripped; tripping

Kids Definition of trip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to catch the foot against something so as to stumble : cause to stumble

2 : to make or cause to make a mistake Their tricky questions tripped us up.

3 : to move (as in dancing) with light quick steps She tripped lightly around the room.

4 : to release (as a spring) by moving a catch



Kids Definition of trip (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an instance of traveling from one place to another a trip to Europe

2 : a brief errand having a certain aim or being more or less regular a trip to the dentist

3 : the action of releasing something mechanically

4 : a device for releasing something by tripping a mechanism

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More from Merriam-Webster on trip

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trip

Spanish Central: Translation of trip

Nglish: Translation of trip for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trip for Arabic Speakers

Comments on trip

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living or existing for a long time

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